Chitwan National Park

After meeting the tour guide the bus finally left at 7am. With 2 hour journey ahead the bus was in good shape, unlike the roads before we had even left Kathmandu it was a battle to stay in your seat. The mountain views were spectacular. After 2.5 hours we stopped at a services for “lunch” (945am) had veg curry. We then drove another 20 minutes to the rafting site. We sat around for an hour in the sun then had a safety brief I was surprised how in depth it was. The water was freezing!!!!! But it was really good fun we all got soaked in the rapids. We went 26km in 3 hours.

Then we needed a lift to chitwan, to our horror the bus had finished but the tour organiser said it was no problem as a truck would take us. We didn’t realise this literally ment him paying a random truck 1000 rupees to drive us 2.5 hours. We got in the lorry crammed with 6 other people, then held on as we tore round mountain bends at a crazy speeds. We just looked at each other thinking is this actually happening. After 20 minutes 4 people got out. The journey seemed to take forever the roads were barely surfaced.

Just after an hour we came to a holt, many lorries sat stationary ahead. We looked in fear that maybe there had been a landslide. Wondering if this was us for the night. After a few minutes the queue moved, darkness was looming by the minute. 2 hours and 40 minutes after getting in the truck we passed the entrance to the park. 5 miles from the park we were told this was as far as the ride went. Luckily a taxi stopped and said it would be 500 rupees.

We arrived at chitwan safari camp and lodge at 715pm. After checking into our room we felt relaxed knowing the journey was over. Room was good with 3 beds. 3 solid beds. Then I realised we left our flip flops in the taxi :(. Dinner consisted of egg Fried rice, potatoes and some fried chicken that was mainly bone.

Woke up at 550am for breakfast at 630am. Weather was hazy but the forecast was good. We left just after 7am for a canoe ride. The boats were cool, literally a hollowed out tree. We saw many crocodile, woodpeckers, kingfisher, peacocks and a few elephants being rode in the distance. After we went on a 5km jungle trek. It was crazy to think that we were sharing the jungle with wild animals. First we saw a deer, then a few monkeys in the tree tops. There were huge termite hills. Then we spotted a bull elephant. The guide looked worried he said we had to move quickly and quietly. Then on the way back he said it was a rare site. His Tusks were huge.

The elephant breeding centre was next. I was saddened that it was a line of about 8 elephants under huts all chained to a post. The keeper said that the bull elephant comes to the centre to mate. There were a few babies running loose I was surprised how hairy they are. We then stopped briefly at the elephant bathing spot. There were 4 elephants having a great time splashing about. Then we went back for lunch.

After lunch we had the elephant trek. I was a bit uneasy with riding an elephant as I wanted to know they were treated well. It seemed happy. The owner said she was 25 years old and he was riding for 10 years. He was just 23! The trek lasted around an hour we saw a deer, then we saw 4 rhinos followed by a monkey. The elephant walked along, was strange that such a big animal could walk along so quietly. She went into the water and scooped up what must have been 4-5 litres of water at a time.

Got back to the hotel and attempted to shower there was a mere trickle of cold water. Strange that showering back in Kathmandu was actually gonna feel good.
After dinner we were supposed to attend a cultural dancing show but we opted instead to go to a bar with a group of travellers we had met previously in the day. Half a bottle of gin and 3 sprites came to just over £9. We went to bed at midnight with the alarm set for 610am.

Next morning we left on the coach at 730am. The coach was really nice, sadly the roads were just as horrendous and 2 hours in we had made very little progress. 10 hours after leaving chitwan we finally got back to Kathmandu. We had dinner in the hotel then went to bed ready to catch our flight in the morning.

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